Our high-quality authentic cast iron is made by the Iwachu Company, located in Morioka Prefecture, Japan. Iwachu is the most well known and respected manufacturer of traditional Nanbu-style ironware. Today, craftsmen at Iwachu pay respect to this ancient tradition by creating each Iwachu product with precision and hand craftsmanship. Iwachu's ironware has earned a well deserved worldwide reputation for their superior quality, beauty, and lasting durability.
The production process of making traditional cast iron consists of 64 to 68 steps. At Iwachu, most of this process is still done by hand and quality is strictly maintained and controlled by a master craftsman known as a "kamashi". It requires at least 15 years to become a full-fledged craftsman, and 30-40 years to become a "kamashi."
The Japanese craft of Nambu-tekki (cast iron) sprang from the middle of the 17th century and remains popular today. Nambu Tekki, Japanese cast iron has been crafted in the northern capital city of the Nambu Clan (present day Morioka in Iwate Prefecture) for over 400 years. Cast Iron is quite famous for cooking various Japanese winter dishes called Nabemono or "one-pot" cooking. The superior insulating properties mean that the heat is distributed more evenly and stays warmer for a much longer period of time than regular cookware. For this reason, using cast iron to cook at the table for everyone to share has become an enjoyable practice and a great way to appreciate not only the ready-made food but the beauty of the Nambu. The Japanese usher in the New Year serving winter dishes to their guests using cast iron because it is a viewed as a status symbol in Japan. Cast iron is also used for making Tempura, delicious deep-fried vegetables or seafood. Cast Ironware is also preferred for sautéing and baking. Traditional Japanese cast iron ware is a boon for cooks since it heats evenly, retains heat well and lasts virtually forever. In addition to the health benefits, one of the main advantages of using Japanese cast iron is that it is extremely durable. The versatility of the iron pot or skillet is unrivaled; use it on the stove top, grill, or in the oven. The fact that you can first use on the stovetop and then pop the same pot in the oven makes for quick and easy cooking!
Japanese Cast Iron Ware
The Cast-Iron ware that we offer is from the Iwachu Cast Iron Company of Morioka, Japan. This company is famous for making fine Japanese Cast Iron Pots and Japanese Chagama, the big iron kettle used in the tea ceremony, and smaller portable tea-pot-shaped kettles called nanbu-tetsubin. Cooking in authentic cast-iron is said to bring out the natural, subtle flavor of tea and foods; it may be due to the fact that it gives a steadier and more even heat. Japanese cast-iron is known to be the very best in the world. The heavier the cast-iron, the better, as it allows for more careful cooking and a higher count of natural iron, nickel, and other natural elements necessary and essential for our health.